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North Carolina Workers’ Comp Defense Blog

 

North Carolina House Passes Bill That Enables First Responders to Obtain Workers’ Compensation Coverage for PTSD

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HB 492 PASSED BY NC HOUSE On May 6, the N.C. House of Representatives passed H.B. 492 which allows first responders to qualify for workers’ compensation for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). If passed into law, the bill would take effect July 1, 2021 and would allow law-enforcement officers, firefighters, emergency dispatchers, and emergency management services personnel […]

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When Benefits Run Their Course

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In the case of Dunbar v. Acme Southern, the employee sustained a compensable injury in 1998. He entered a settlement agreement to resolve all indemnity benefits.  The agreement allowed the employee’s medical compensation to continue. The employee continued to receive medical treatment and the carrier continued to pay for the treatment. However, in 2013 the medical […]

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Suitable Employment: 10 Tips

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If open long enough, a “Suitable Employment” issue will arise in almost all workers’ compensation claims.  Here are 10 tips that may make your life easier: Watch your dates from the inception of the claim. Different statutes apply and different case law may apply, so check to see whether your date of injury is before or […]

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Method 5 of Calculating the Average Weekly Wage as the Last Resort

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Nay v. Cornerstone Staffing Solutions, No. COA19-262, 2020 WL 5000765, at *1 (N.C. Ct. App. Aug. 18, 2020) Plaintiff sustained a compensable injury when he was working in a “temp-to-perm” position for Cornerstone Staffing Solution, an employment staffing agency. “Temp-to-perm” employees are placed with client companies that offer the possibility of full time, long-term employment […]

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Analyzing Mental Impairments under Workers’ Compensation

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It is well established that as long as the resulting disability, meets statutory requirements, mental impairments are compensable in North Carolina. These injuries arise in multiple ways.  For example, a bank teller is assaulted in the course of a bank robbery and, after recovering from physical injuries, cannot return to work due to anxiety. It […]

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What to Expect When You’re Expecting… a Workers’ Compensation Claim

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Background Workers’ Compensation is exactly that.  It is a system designed to compensate workers who get injured on the job if they need to miss work or receive medical treatment.  In North Carolina, Workers’ Compensation claims are governed by The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act.  The North Carolina Industrial Commission has exclusive jurisdiction over the controversies that may […]

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Proposed Bills Could Add COVID-19 as a Compensable Occupation Disease

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NORTH CAROLINA REPRESENTATIVES PROPOSE BILLS ADDING COVID-19 AS A PRESUMED COMPENSABLE DISEASE FOR INDIVIDUALS IN CERTAIN TYPES OF EMPLOYMENT.   The North Carolina legislature has been fast at work drafting and passing legislation in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act is no exception as two bills were introduced on May 1, […]

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Publicly Advertising a Job is Not Essential in Proving Suitable Employment

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Suitable employment has been defined as “any job that a claimant is capable of performing considering his age, education, physical limitations, vocational skills and experience.” Shah v. Howard Johnson, 140 N.C. App. 58, 68, 535 S.E.2d 577, 583 (2000) (internal marks and citation omitted).   However, the job position must be a bona fide position, and not “make-work. […]

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“Vested Interest”

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HOW SHIFTS IN INTEREST RATES ARE AFFECTING THE VALUE OF WORKERS’ COMPENSATION DEATH CLAIMS Interest rates affect many aspects of our lives, from the housing market, to credit cards, to student loan debt. One area that is often over-looked, is how shifts in rates affect workers’ compensation claims. Death claims in North Carolina represent the […]

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COVID-19 Workers’ Compensation Q&A Hosted by WCDI

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Cranfill Sumner & Hartzog is proud to be the North Carolina partner of the Workers’ Compensation Defense Institute (WCDI). WCDI is an alliance of leading US law firms that dedicate considerable experience to the representation of employers and carriers in the area of workers’ compensation.  Over the past month, WCDI has hosted two informational webinar answering questions […]

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Extended Compensation Filing Protocol

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For North Carolina workers’ compensation claims arising on or after June 24, 2011, N.C. Gen. Stat. § 97-29(b) provides the duration of compensation for temporary total disability is 500 weeks from the date of first disability unless the employee qualifies for extended compensation.  Pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 97-29(c), an employee may make an […]

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A Never Ending Story: Asbestos Exposure and Mesothelioma

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Asbestos was widely used from the 1940s to the 1980s, but surprisingly, it seems claims of asbestos exposure and the development of asbestos related disease are not slowing down anytime soon.  Recently, the Wall Street Journal published an article examining a lawsuit filed in 2016 that alleges Penn State University negligently exposed a professor to asbestos […]

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NC Workers’ Compensation Claims & Healthcare Workers

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As to COVID-19, are potential claims for front-line healthcare workers compensable? Specifically, for those working in Emergency Rooms or having face-to-face interactions with patients, how is the medical causation analysis affected?  Under current NC law, to prevail on a claim for workers’ compensation benefits, a claimant must show that the claim arises from an injury […]

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